Ford goes twin-cylinder with 11 global models

  • Ford to launch cylinder deactivation in 2018
  • Global first on three-cylinder engine
  • Ford’s no-compromise ‘defies industry opinion’
2016 Ford Fiesta ST 200
THE LATEST FORD FIESTA: This is the 2016 Ford Fiesta ST 200 – the hotshot of the range, but other models – not just the little family car – are about to get three-cylinder, one-litre engines that can disengage a cylinder to add to already excellent fuel-economy figures. Image: Ford / Newspress

COLOGNE, Germany – Ford has announced that its three-cylinder, one-litre, EcoBoost petrol engine will be offered with fuel-saving cylinder-deactivation from 2018.

The engine, Ford says, came through innovative engineering “and defies industry opinion that it was not possible to build a three-cylinder engine”.

The process cuts the fuel supply and valve operation on one cylinder when full power is not called for, such as when coasting or cruising with light demand on the engine.

The tech can disengage or re-engage the cylinder in 14 milliseconds 20 times faster than the blink of an eye. “Combined with advanced solutions to counteract vibration,” Ford says, “the change will be imperceptible to the driver in terms of operation and engine performance.”

READ MORE about three-cylinder cars

Ford’s Bob Fascetti told The Corner through a media release: “Ford has once again pushed back the boundary of power-train engineering to prove there is still untapped potential for even the best internal combustion engines to deliver better fuel-efficiency.”

The process was developed jointly by Ford engineers at Dunton Technical Centre in England and in Germany and the US but is not a new concept. A number of automakers adopted the tech in 2005 though the concept has been around for far longer.

READ MORE about the Ford Fiesta

The system, Ford explained, uses engine oil-pressure to activate a valve rocker that interrupts the connection between the camshaft and the valves of cylinder number one.

Sophisticated computer software determines the optimum moment based on speed, throttle position and engine load. A single-piece camshaft module similar to that debuted earlier in 2016 on the new Ford EcoBlue diesel engine frees space within the cylinder-head for new oil channels and valve-switching components.

Denis Gorman, a power-train engineer with Ford Europe, added: “With the variable capacity delivered by cylinder deactivation the driver will get the full power and performance of the whole engine only when needed.”

He added that fuel-savings of as much as six percent would be possible.


The one-litre EcoBoost engine was launched in the Ford Focus in 2012 with direct fuel-injection and turbocharging to create an engine with the power and performance of a non-turbo 1.6-litre engine.

Ford has 11 models available in Europe with the three-cylinder engine and points ot that 20% of Ford sales in Europe in the past year specified the one-litre EcoBoost – though the proportion in the Fiesta range is two out of five.


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